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Friday, April 13, 2012

Sukhoi Su-27 'Flanker' series aircraft - Timeline & Family Tree [Infograhpic] - UPDATED: 2012.04.13

Su-27 fighter was the first production variant of the Sukhoi Design Bureau's 'Flanker' series of aircraft. Since then the aircraft has spawned numerous other variants, around a common airframe, that were developed to meet differing requirements. Some programmes were also undertaken near simultaneously, making tracking their development a tad tricky.
The infographic below lists out, in chronology, the sequence of & simultaneous development of the aircraft, including its design concept & prototype variant, in addition to the actual final mass produced version.
Listed in Blue are the design concept, in Red is the final production aircraft, while White denotes prototype.
Click on the image to view a larger-sized picture
Sukhoi Su-27 'Flanker' series aircraft - Timeline & Family Tree [Infograhpic]
The 'Flanker' series of aircrafts, overall, include:
  • Su-27
  • Su-30
  • Su-33
  • Su-34
  • Su-35
  • Su-37 [Experimental]
While the illustration is in Cyrillic, it should not be too hard to identify the aircrafts. The Russian 'S' looks like the English 'C', while 'u' resembles English 'y', & the Russian 'I' resembles English 'N'.
As evident, Indian Air Forces [IAF] Su-30 MKI fighter aircrafts too are an evolution of the twin-seat version of the original Su-27 aircraft.
Update [2012.04.13]:
A similar illustration showing the lineage of the Flanker series, this time in English.
Do check out the website from where this image has been sourced. It contains an extensive amount of information about the multiple variants of Flankers in service with the different Air Forces of the world & also the subsequent programmes it has spawned. A similar compilation has also been created there for the MiG-29 [Fulcrum] fighter aircrafts, also in service with the Indian Air Force [IAF].

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  1. What is the update on the Super Sukhois? The second site you referred to has awful navigation

  2. The Flanker looks like a well balanced dog fighter - though questions remain whether Russia (and India) will be able to replace it with the 5th generation PAK-FA in a timely fashion. Many western countries will be armed with the 5th Generation F-35 or even an export version F-22 within the next 10 years.


    1. You're right. Going by the article by Piotr Butowski, the PAK-FA program does seem to be facing difficulties, that could delay beyond the promised schedule.

      Speaking from an Indian perspective, I look at it this way. I look at the Air Force strengths of India's immediate adverseries & see how far ahead they have progressed towards inducting 5th gen. One of them is testing the J-20, whose progress is not likely to be any faster than that of the PAK-FA [& I'm being generous here :D] while the other country is inducting the JF-17 that traces its roots to a mashup of MiG-21 & an American design of the 70/80s. Taking these into consideration, an IAF that inducts 5th gen a little after the others may not weaken its preparedness all that significantly, IMHO.

      But this is strictly from an Indian pov. Russia has its own dynamics & perception & any delays in modernisation could hit them much harder.

  3. I will support a similar program AMCA to proceed further with help and partnership with france. This will help both countries and would boost indian industries by export.


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